Have you or a loved one been injured by a distracted driver in Boulder? The fatigued driving accident attorneys at Klein Frank, P.C. are here to help. Our client-focused and award-winning legal team possesses the experience and compassion necessary to stand up for your rights regardless of the circumstances. We will do everything in our power to ensure you receive the just compensation and care you need to make your best possible recovery.
How Big Is the Problem?
Driving while fatigued might not seem as dangerous as other dangerous driving habits, but it is actually a major problem in the United States, resulting in at least 100,000 police reported crashes every year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
In fact, driving while fatigued can be as dangerous as driving while under the influence of alcohol. Studies have shown that being awake for 18 hours can cause impairment equivalent to a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .05. After 24 hours without sleep, an individual’s impairment would be equivalent to .10, compared to .08, which is considered legally drunk.
According to the National Sleep Foundation (NSF), nearly three-quarters of adults in the country drive a car to and from work and often do so while drowsy. In a poll conducted by the NSF, 37% of adult drivers admitted to falling asleep behind the wheel while another 13% said they nod off at least once a month.
How risky is this? The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety did some research on the topic, producing a study that revealed those who sleep between six and seven hours of sleep are twice as likely to have an accident compared to those who get at least eight hours of sleep. Those who sleep less than five hours are four to five times more likely to be involved in an accident.
Unfortunately, state reporting practices are inconsistent, and police are not trained to identify fatigue as a crash factor. Nevertheless, the NHTSA estimates that at least 1,550 deaths and 71,000 injuries occur every year due to fatigued drivers, costing $12.5 billion in losses, though these figures might actually be much higher.
How to Avoid Drowsy Driving
To prevent yourself from getting behind the wheel when too tired to drive:
- Get seven to eight hours of sleep on a daily basis
- If impossible, make sure to get a good night’s sleep at least before long car trips
- Don’t drink alcohol or take medication that may make you drowsy before driving
- Avoid driving when the human body is most inclined to drowsiness—between midnight and six a.m. and again during the late afternoon)
If you ever start to nod off while driving, pull over immediately—ideally in a safe, well-lit area—and take a quick nap. If you can’t fall asleep, stretch, drink coffee, splash water on your face, or do whatever is necessary to make yourself feel more alert. Take as many breaks as you need—it’s far better to be behind schedule than to have to file an insurance claim for causing an accident.
Over Six Decades of Experience
If you were involved in a car accident caused by a fatigued driver, you have a right to hold that person accountable for their negligent behavior. At Klein Frank, P.C., we have over 60 years of combined experience and a vast amount of resources to determine the exact cause of your accident and ensure all at-fault parties are held responsible for your suffering.
Contact us today at (303) 622-3876 for a free initial consultation with a Boulder fatigued driving accidents lawyer.